Pittsburgh’s IT Service and Support Specialists


Pittsburgh, Cranberry, Greensburg, Indiana
Uniontown and throughout Southwestern PA

2nd Quarter 2011 - April Issue

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Disaster Recovery - When Data Disappears

Over the years, computers have become more reliable. If you've invested in quality, business class machines and a proactive maintenance program, it might seem concerns about backups are a thing of the past.

Nothing could be further from the truth. Your data is at risk from every quarter.

  • Files that are accidentally deleted or "saved over."
  • Data corruption, including Windows registry problems.
  • Hard drive failures.
  • Physical disasters (fires, floods, and storms).
  • Equipment theft.
  •  Zero day viruses (that exploit a previously unknown weakness in computers and anti-viral systems)

It's not a question of "if," but rather "when" you will need to recover valuable data from a backup system. The next question to ask yourself is: "how fast do you need to recover lost data?"

Economical, but Slow (Good)

 A standard tape backup system is a good foundational step for disaster recovery. Tape media is long-lived and provides for both backup and offsite archiving of data. Tape backups are economical, even for the smallest companies. Tape's most significant drawback is recovery time. In the event of a significant loss of data, it could take days to get your business up and running again.

 Quick Recovery (Better)

 Significantly faster is a backup system which goes harddisk to harddisk, and then to tape. Software like Symatec's Backup Exec (a Windows Server solution) can make even the redeployment of installed software packages a breeze.  After a disk to disk backup, the tape component maintains the long-life and archiving ability tape is famous for. When considered all together, this backup scheme reduces days of recovery to mere hours.

 Immediate Recovery (Best)

A redundant server (especially when placed off site) reduces downtime in the event of a disaster to the lowest possible minimum. It's almost like having a duplicate office waiting in the wings. Redundant server backups have two downsides. If the duplicate server is off-site (providing the best protection), then it is limited by the broadband service speeds in your area. Secondly, the cost of a redundant server option often makes this solution impractical for small and mid-size businesses.


At Shiloh Service, we recommend the Quick Recovery option whenever possible. It's easy to forget how valuable time and data are to your business. In today's world, everything from client data to major portions of project deliverables are digital. When computers go down and data is lost, the cost of lost production in days and hours can easily exceed the insurance of having reliable backups and archives on which to call.  





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